A meta-analysis of ontological guidance and users' understanding of conceptual models

Arash Saghafi*, Yair Wand

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Information systems are intended to be faithful accounts of real-world applications. As an integral part of the development process, analysts create conceptual models in order to understand the application and communicate requirements. Failure to do so has been a prominent reason for IT projects' failure. Hence, improving the quality of models could have a major impact on the information systems' success. To guide the modeling process, researchers use ontology to create more expressive representations of reality. However, improving expressiveness can make the models complicated and cause cognitive hurdles for users. Therefore, the question is whether ontological guidance is worth the trade-off between expressiveness and complexity. This paper describes a meta-analysis of empirical research examining the impact of ontological guidance on users' understandability. The results show that ontological guidance can improve users' understanding of conceptual models, especially those requiring deeper understanding, thus providing support for ontological guidance in conceptual modeling.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3
Pages (from-to)46-68
JournalJournal of database management
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • Cognition
  • Conceptual Modeling
  • Design
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Ontology
  • Representation Theory
  • Systems Analysis
  • User Understanding
  • PART-WHOLE RELATIONS
  • COGNITIVE FIT
  • INFORMATION-SYSTEMS
  • REPRESENTATION
  • GUIDELINES
  • FRAMEWORK
  • QUALITY
  • RULES
  • STATE

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